Arroyo seeks House seat anew

Arroyo seeks House seat anew
File photo shows former House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo during a House session.
AP / Aaron Favila / File

MANILA, Philippines — Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo will be seeking in 2022 a return to the House of Representatives which she led as speaker from 2018 to 2019.

Her son, incumbent Pampanga Rep. Mikey Arroyo, confirmed her plans to run for a congressional seat, according to The STAR.

The older Arroyo had previously vowed in 2018 that she would be retiring from government service by 2019.

However, she still lingered in government, having become a consultant of the Pampanga provincial government and the adviser of her close ally, President Rodrigo Duterte, on Clark flagship programs and projects following her stint as House speaker.

As House speaker, the former president oversaw an attempt to amend the 1987 Constitution to usher in a federal form of government, which ultimately failed as senators rejected the proposal.

Arroyo’s election to the top of the House in a stunning coup that ousted then Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez marked the continuation of her political rehabilitation under the administration of Duterte, whom she credited for having “provided the atmosphere” for the Supreme Court to acquit her of plunder.

Prior to this, Arroyo was one of the most wildly unpopular presidents in Philippine history, with her administration having been rocked by political and corruption scandals.

She ascended to the presidency in 2001 after then President Joseph Estrada was ousted by a popular military-backed uprising known as EDSA Dos.

While she had pledged to not seek another term, she still ran in 2004 and won an election which supporters of her main rival, the late actor Fernando Poe Jr., said was marred by cheating. — Xave Gregorio with a report from Edu Punay/The STAR

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